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Copperhead (New Earth)

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Copperhead's origins are shrouded in mystery. A master contortionist and escape artist, he adopted a snake motif and decided to use his talents to commit crimes. His first recorded adventure came when he disguised himself as an old man and attempted to steal the tiara from a wealthy dignitary visiting Gotham City. This earned him the attention of Gotham's guardian, Batman, but Copperhead succeeded in stealing the tiara and evading capture.

Batman teamed up with Batgirl and Wonder Woman to set a trap for Copperhead using the Golden Casque of Montezuma as bait. Copperhead encountered the heroes, but once again managed to escape. Soon after, he succeeded in capturing Wonder Woman at Gotham Park and brought her back to his lair. Batman and Batgirl tracked him down, rescued Wonder Woman, and Copperhead was arrested.[1]

Copperhead was later invited by Manhunter Paul Kirk to join the Secret Society of Super-Villains. To test Copperhead's worthiness, he partnered him with Gorilla Grodd and instructed them to break into a scientific research station housed within a lighthouse on San Francisco Bay and steal a sample of Plutonium. While Grodd dealt with the guards, Copperhead stole the Plutonium, but Grodd betrayed him, taking the element for himself and leaving Copperhead behind to be arrested. While in jail, Copperhead was broken out by Lex Luthor in exchange for leading him to the Sinister Citadel so he could become the new leader of the Society. Copperhead then stuck with the group even after Luthor left, helping them pull of a group of robberies. During this time, Copperhead developed a conflict with his fellow Society member Wizard, who thought that the groups leader Funky Flashman was taking all the groups money for himself. While at first disagreeing, Copperhead later began to doubt Flashman, and eventually realized that Flashman was indeed using the Society's money for his own uses. Copperhead then abandoned his fellow members Gorilla Grodd and Star Sapphire on a mission because of this reason, never to rejoin.[2]

Copperhead was later hired to assassinate an important French finance minister in Paris. Fortunately for the minister, the Elongated Man had been visiting Paris at the time and prevented Copperhead from fulfilling his contract. The villain known as Warp helped Copperhead to evade arrest.[3]

Soon after, Copperhead and Warp teamed up with an Italian criminal named Il Calamari and had rematch with the Elongated Man at the Pan-European Economic Conference. They nearly defeated the hero, but his Justice League Europe teammate, the Flash arrived and together they were able to turn the tables on Copperhead and his cohorts.[4]

Later, Copperhead was hired by gangster Ira Gamboli to kill shyster business manager Rex Leech over some money that was owed to him. Copperhead traveled to Hawaii and attacked Rex outside the Compound. Rex's client, Superboy fought against Copperhead and Saved Rex's life.[5]

Shortly thereafter, Copperhead encountered the demon Neron, who bestowed upon him the powers of a true Copperhead snake. Copperhead's body and mind became less human and more like that of a predatory animal.[6]

Copperhead returned to Hawaii to get revenge on Superboy and nearly beat him. He even succeeded in piercing Superboy's near-invulnerable skin. As Copperhead closed in for the kill, Superboy succeeded in pushing him off a cliff.[7]

Copperhead survived and joined a new incarnation of the Suicide Squad under Cameron Chase, to infiltrate a Russian army base. However, Copperhead and his fellow Suicide Squad members betrayed her, saying that the only reason they were on the mission was to find someone to deactivate their collars and then return home. The group succeeded in their plan, despite Chase surviving. Before he left, Copperhead said that he hoped to meet her again.[8]

Copperhead continued to evolve and became a vicious serial killer who consumed his victims after slaughtering them. He was eventually captured and placed on trial in a Los Angeles criminals court. Prosecuting the case was district attorney Kate Spencer. Copperhead received a verdict of not guilty by way of genetic anomaly and was sentenced to be taken to a Metagene research facility in Death Valley. Copperhead escaped during transport and managed to murder several more people. Upon hearing of Copperhead's escape, Kate Spencer adopted the guise of the Manhunter and fought with Copperhead in the sewers beneath Los Angeles. She used her power baton to blast a hole through Copperhead's head, killing him. At the time of his death, Copperhead had managed to murder more than forty-eight people.[9]

Copperhead is later revived along with many other dead heroes and villains as a member of the Black Lantern Corps. He attempted to attack The Flash with them but failed. Later, Copperhead appeared attacking Coast City with other Black Lanterns. Here, he was killed again by Green Lantern when he destroyed his ring.[10]


Abilities

Equipment

  • Snake-suit: Constructed from a unique weave of expinemental metallic and elastic fibers, the snake-suit is coated with a polymer film that enables Copperhead to slither through impossibly small spaces and makes him almost untouchable. The snake-suit is also capable of being stretched to great lenghts, giving Copperhead added support as he scales sheer walls. The fangs in the snake-suit's helmet are also coated with a higly toxic venom that can cause paralysis and death.
  • Although this character was originally introduced during DC's Earth-One era of publication, their existence following the events of the 1985-86 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths remains intact. However, some elements of the character's Pre-Crisis history may have been altered or removed for Post-Crisis New Earth continuity, and should be considered apocryphal.
  • He collects Transistor Radios.[11]

Related


Footnotes


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